Skip to main content

Full text of "J. Edgar Hoover - G-Man In A G-String"

See other formats


THE GAY HISTORY SERIES - Lesson #6 

G-Man In A G-String 
J. Edgar Hoover - (1895-1972) 

John Edgar Hoover (January 1, 1895 -May 2, 1972) was the first Director of the Federal Bureau of 
Investigation (FBI) of the United States. Appointed Director of the Bureau of Investigation - predecessor 
to the FBI - in 1924, he was instrumental in founding the FBI in 1935, where he remained Director until 
his death aged 77. Hoover is credited with building the FBI into a large and efficient crime-fighting 
agency, and with instituting a number of modernisations to police technology, such as a centralised 
fingerprint file and forensic laboratories. 

He was also as queer as a 3 dollar bill. He carried on a decades' long affair with his FBI second-in- 
command, Clyde Tolson, as his catamite, and he sometimes dressed in women's clothes and went out 
night clubbing and attended chic cocktail parties of the rich and powerful in drag, using the name 
"Mary." 

Hoover's political and law enforcement history was checkered, and now is not the time or place to go into 
every detail of his long and complex life and career. The liberal left has always despised Hoover because 
of his apparently genuine distaste for Communism, a distaste which can be traced back to a 1919 
Bolshevik bombing campaign in which the Reds, among other targets, blew up Wall Street with a milk 
wagon bomb and the home of U.S. Attorney General Mitchell Palmer in Washington D.C. A number of 
innocent people were killed in this now forgotten murder spree, which has been pretty much erased from 
the liberal history books, although there are still occasional weepy references to the subsequent "Palmer 
Raids" during which a number of illegal aliens suspected, usually with reason, of being Communists or 
anarchists were deported to the Soviet Union. 

Hoover clung to power for almost 50 years as America's secret police chief, maintaining his position 
largely through the voluminous files he accumulated on the peccadilloes of prominent politicians: 
financial, sexual, and criminal. Unlike later media and law enforcement, Hoover was quite willing to 
blackmail and pressure liberal Democrats as well as Republicans, and for this the hatred of the liberal left 
for him still burns bright forty years after his death, as witness the recent smear movie biopic starring 
Leonardo Di Caprio in the title role. 

J. Edgar Hoover was born on New Year's Day 1895 in Washington D.C. to Anna Marie Hoover, who was 
of German Swiss descent, and Dick Naylor Hoover, Sr. (1856-1921), of English and German ancestry. 
Hoover was the ultimate Washington insider; he was born there and never left. 

He grew up near the Eastern Market in Washington's Capitol Hill neighbourhood, and obtained a law 
degree from George Washington University Law School in 1916. During World War I, immediately after 
getting his law degree, Hoover was hired by the Justice Department, thus avoiding the draft and any 
chance he himself might end up in one of those muddy ole trenches getting shot at by them German 
fellers. Risk avoidance of all kinds was something Hoover was always adept at; during his entire lifelong 
career as America's top government goon Hoover never once carried a gun, made an arrest, or came 
under fire. He was strictly a desk jockey. 

Hoover was soon promoted to head of the Enemy Aliens Registration Section. In August 1919, in the 
middle of the Communist bombing campaign mentioned above, he became head of the new General 
Intelligence Division of the Bureau of Investigation within the Justice Department. From there, in 1921, 
he rose in the Bureau of Investigation to deputy head, and in 1924, the Attorney General made him the 
acting director. On May 10, 1924, President Calvin Coolidge appointed Hoover as the sixth Director of 
the Bureau of Investigation, following President Warren Harding's death and in response to allegations 
that the prior director, William J. Burns, was involved in the Teapot Dome scandal. Coolidge pointedly 
did not ask the Bureau to investigate his predecessor Harding's mysterious death. (See the Aryan History 
Series) . When Hoover took over the Bureau of Investigation, it had approximately 650 employees, 
including 441 Special Agents. 



Hoover was "noted as sometimes being capricious in his leadership", according to one on-line article. In 
fact, he was a real asshole of ane employer. He was incredibly petty, almost a caricature of the anal 
supervisor who counts and rations paper clips around the office. He fired FBI agents for no reason, 
sometimes dismissing men for "looking stupid like truck drivers" or being "pinheads". (This is obviously 
no longer a disqualification for Bureau employment today). He tranferred agents who displeased him to 
Podunk, Alabama or Devil's Outhouse, Montana regularly, thus effectively ending their careers. On one 
occasion he heard about a bachelor party at an FBI field office for an agent about to be married, wherein 
a black stripper had been employed. Hoover flew to the city in question, hauled in all the agents, and 
ranted and raved for an hour about the incident, concluding with the screamed imprecation, "There will 
be no naked negresses in my Bureau!" 

The famous Melvin Purvis was a prime example: Purvis was one of the most effective agents the FBI had 
in capturing and breaking up 1930s bank robbery gangs, but Hoover was jealous of all the publicity 
Purvis gathered, and maneuvered him out of the FBI. Purvis committed suicide with the same gun with 
which he allegedly shot Dillinger. (As an aside, there is actually some reasonable doubt it was in fact 
Dillinger who died in the 1934 ambush, but that is a tale for another time). 

Even though he was not there, Hoover was credited with several highly publicized captures or shootings 
of outlaws and bank robbers. These included that of Dillinger, Alvin Karpis, and Machine Gun Kelly, 
which led to the Bureau's powers being broadened and it was given its new name in 1935: the Federal 
Bureau of Investigation. In 1939, the FBI became pre-eminent in the field of domestic intelligence. Hoover 
made changes, such as expanding and combining fingerprint files in the Identification Division to compile 
the largest collection of fingerprints to date. He also helped to expand the FBI's recruitment and create 
the FBI Laboratory, a division established in 1932 to examine evidence found by the FBI. This was the 
beginning of the present liberal democratic Surveillance State. 

In 1946, U.S. Attorney General Tom C. Clark authorised Hoover to compile a list of potentially disloyal 
Americans who might be detained during a wartime national emergency. Once again, we see where our 
present dictatorship came into being, at the hands of New Deal Democrats, although Republican hands 
are by no means clean. In 1950, at the outbreak of the Korean War, Hoover submitted to President 
Truman a plan to suspend the writ of habeas corpus and detain 12,000 Americans suspected of disloyalty. 
Truman did not act on the plan. Today, when Israel attacks Iran or some other crisis appears, it is 
doubtful if Barry Soetoro will show the same restraint. 

Presidents Harry S. Truman and John F. Kennedy each considered dismissing Hoover as FBI Director, 
but ultimately concluded that the political cost of doing so would be too great. In other words, Hoover 
had something on them. In Truman's case it was financial skullduggery, judicial malfeasance and mob 
connections from when Truman was a judge in Kansas City under the infamous Thomas Pendergast 
machine, and in Kennedy's case it was an incredible career of sexual debauchery (including one affair 
with a suspected female German spy during the war) as well as mob connections through the Daley 
machine in Chicago which won him the 1960 election. Hoover was able to beat off an attempt by Lyndon 
Johnson to get rid of him by threatening to reveal that Johnson's friend and aide, Jack Valenti, a special 
assistant and confidant to President who was married Johnson's personal secretary, was having a 
sodomitic relationship with a commercial photographer friend. 

Hoover never married, and beginning in the 1940s, rumors circulated that he was gay. Hoover's uxorious 
public relationship with his deputy director Clyde Tolson was certainly both indiscreet and suggestive. 
The men not only worked closely together during the day, but they also took meals, went to night clubs 
and vacationed together. Tolson lived just down the street from Hoover's home and frequently spent the 
night with his boss, in his home and in the same hotel room when travelling. When Hoover died in 1972, 
Tolson inherited Hoover's estate and moved into his home, having accepted the American flag that 
draped Hoover's casket. Tolson is himself buried a few yards away from Hoover in the Congressional 
Cemetery. More than one Washington insider of the time, writing his or her memoirs, mentions 
something to the effect that it was one of those pre-"Enlightenment" cases where "everybody knew and 
nobody said anything, since we did not admit such things existed in those days. Unlike today's 
Enlightened era, etc." 

Hoover hunted down and threatened anyone who made insinuations about his sexuality. He also spread 
rumors that Adlai Steve nson was gay to damage the liberal governor's 1952 presidential campaign. His 
extensive secret files contained surveillance material on Eleanor Roosevelt's lesbian lovers and 



encounters. This included one of the Bureau's earliest electronic surveillance tapes, secretly recorded in a 
New York hotel room around 1940, wherein the First Lady was captured for all time in a lesbo encounter 
with 300 pound Negro actress Hattie McDaniel, who played Mammy in Gone With The Wind. Hoover 
kept this tape in his private safe in his home, and would sometimes bring it out and play it during private 
parties or for the amusement of various Republican politicians. 

In his 1993 biography Official and Confidential: The Secret Life of J. Edgar Hoover, journalist Anthony 
Summers quoted society divorcee Susan Rosenstiel as claiming to have seen Hoover engaging in cross- 
dressing in the 1950s. She stated that on two occasions she witnessed Hoover wearing a fluffy pink dress 
with flounces and lace, stockings, high heels and a black curly wig, at homosexual orgies, where he was 
introduced as "Mary". Hoover must have been worried about this Jewess's mouth, because he managed 
to get her indicted for perjury in an unrelated civil matter in 1971, thus carefully ruining her credibility. 

Summers also said that the Mafia had blackmail material on Hoover, which made him reluctant to 
pursue aggressively organised crime. It is known that on one wiretap tape, Jewish Mob kingpin Meyer 
Lansky is recorded as boasting to an associate, "Don't worry about Hoover . We got him by the balls. 
He's a fag, and we got pictures of him [performing a certain deviate sexual act]." It is certain that for 
years Hoover dragged his feet on mob investigations, and was only forced publicly to admit that there 
even was such a thing as the Mafia after the 1957 Apalachin crime convention was surprised and raided. 

Hoover certainly had some gay contacts besides Tolson, including Jewish attorney Roy Cohn, who 
worked closely with both Hoover and Senator Joe McCarthy during the 1950s investigations of 
Communists. Later, Cohn denied that he was a homosexual on the strange grounds that while he had sex 
with men, he pitched rather than caught, so to speak. 

Some people affiliated with Hoover supported the claims later that he had homosexual tendencies, after 
the secret policeman was dead and it was safe to do so. Ethel Merman, a friend of Hoover since 1938, 
stated in 1978 "Some of my best friends are homosexual. Everybody knew about J. Edgar Hoover, but he 
was the best chief the FBI ever had" Hoover often frequented New York City 's Stork Club and one 
observer - soap model Luisa Stuart , who was 18 or 19 at the time - told Summers she saw him holding 
hands with Tolson as they all rode in a limo uptown to the Cotton Club in 1936. Novelist William Styron 
told Summers that he once spotted Hoover and Tolson in a California beach house and the director was 
painting his friend's toenails. Harry Hay, founder of the Mattachine Society, one of the first gay rights 
organisations, confirmed that Hoover and Tolson sat in boxes owned by and used exclusively by gay men 
at their racing haunt Del Mar in California. One medical expert told Summers that Hoover was of 
"strongly predominant homosexual orientation", while another medical expert categorised him as a 
"bisexual with failed heterosexuality". 

Interestingly, Hoover was also a devoted Freemason, being raised a Master Mason on November 9, 1920, 
in Federal Lodge No. 1, Washington, DC, just two months before his 26th birthday. During his 52 years 
with the Masons he received many medals, awards and decorations. Eventually in 1955, he was coroneted 
a Thirty-Third Degree Inspector General Honorary in the Southern Scottish Rite Jurisdiction. He was 
also awarded the Scottish Rite's highest recognition, the Grand Cross of Honor, in 1965. Today a J. 
Edgar Hoover room exists within the House of the Temple. The room contains many of Hoover's personal 
papers and records. 

Hoover died at his Washington D.C. home on May 2, 1972, from a heart attack His body lay in state in 
the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol, where Chief Justice Warren Burger eulogised him. President Nixon 
delivered another eulogy at the funeral service in the National Presbyterian Church. In public, Nixon said 
"One of the giants ... a national symbol of courage, patriotism and granite-like honesty and integrity". In 
private, Nixon's reaction was "That old cocksucker!" 

Operational command of the Bureau passed to Associate Director Clyde Tolson. On May 3, Nixon 
appointed L. Patrick Gray, a Justice Department official with no FBI experience, as Acting Director, with 
W. Mark Felt remaining as Associate Director. Gray's first act was to change the locks on Clyde Tolson's 
office, and have several agents gently but firmly escort him from the building. Tolson announced his 
retirement from the FBI a short time later, but he was never allowed back into the building unescorted. 

One of the great mysteries of Hoover's end is what happened to his massive filing cabinets full of fifty 
years' worth of dirt on America 's Best and Brightest, especially choice items like the Eleanor Roosevelt 



tape. When he took over, Gray made an instant search for these files and demanded that Hoover 's long- 
time secretary, Helen Gandy, hand all the material over. Gandy replied that acting on Hoover 's final 
orders she had burned the material in a big huge bonfire in the backyard of Hoover's home the night he 
died. Some believe this story, some don't, and the alleged continued existence in some secret hiding place 
of the Hoover Files, or selected copies, has been one of Washington D.C. most enduring rumours and 
legends for the past forty years.